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The Slytherin Dungeons

November 2023 Game Challenge: Rampart

Prof. Will Lestrange

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Since the highest scorer for the month of October was Caius Magnusson, I looked at his vote of "blast to the past/Tower Defence" and noted that the other person who expressed an opinion on what game to play simply chose "Golden Era of Gaming".  This meant that it was time to choose a game in the defence genre - but to opt for a game as old school as possible.  In terms of video game history, one game that is often considered the first true tower defence game is the early nineties classic Rampart!

Rampart was developed by Atari Games in 1990 - first for the video arcade and then for the Atari Lynx (has anyone actually had the chance to play with one of those systems?)  The idea is that you need to defend your castles by building defensive structures - and then when ships come to attack, you need to shoot back!  And of course you want to expand your own territory as well... which requires a surprisingly layered and involved gameplay.  After selecting your initial castle to defend (which automatically comes with a walled area surrounding it), you need to place some cannons inside the walled area to protect it.  From then on, gameplay consists of two phases:

1) Shoot at the ships (the first few will take two hits to shoot) to defend from enemy attacks.

2) Use a sequence of Tetris pieces to expand your walled area:  you can patch up the holes left by enemy ships, try to expand and add new walled areas, or both.  But the clock is ticking... and if you don't have at least one castle enclosed in a walled area, the game ends at this point and you will have to walk the plank after seeing your score.  Regardless, you will score points based on your territory (area and number of castles enclosed) as well as the amount of damage you did to the enemy ships.

3) Place new defensive cannons inside your walled areas (the walled areas don't have to contain castles of their own, but they do have to be enclosed).

And so it goes on and on... until you destroy all the enemy ships and get to start the same thing over again with harder enemies!

For this month, you want to go to THIS LINK  to play Rampart (you can choose any difficulty level; I suggest going as easy as possible).  Screencap proof of your high score by November 30 at 11:59 PM HOL!  (And in your post, also include what type of game you want to play in December :  are you thinking of 'action'?  'adventure'?  'puzzle'?  'web game'?  'Golden Era of gaming'?  'In the past five years'?  If you win the month, I will try to make it happen!)


-Participation at all will earn you 5 scales.

-If you make it through the first attack phase (e.g. you still 'control' at least one castle after rebuilding your walls once the first attack is complete) or score at least 1000 points your screencap will earn you 10 scales instead of 5.

-The top three scores of the month will get extra scales (25, 20, and 15 respectively for the month instead of 5 or 10) as well as special awards (and the chance for the next month's game to be in your honour)!


WARNING:  The commands for this game are counterintuitive; while the arrow keys work as expected, keep the following in mind:

-Press the SHIFT key after the game loads to start the One Player Options (from there you can just press the return/enter key to pick the default options).

-The X key will be used to confirm your choice of castle, cannon location, or Tetris piece location when building walls.

-The X key is also used to fire your cannons at enemy ships.

Good luck!


PS:  Feel free to edit your post throughout the month as you improve your score!

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  • 2 weeks later...

For some reason, it didn't show me the special screen with the score, only the high scoreboard.

My score is 10080, tried to type 'JAN' and it blinked while inputting the name, so there's a blank space. 



Edit: Forgot to vote, but doubt it'll count since I'm not the top score. :P Maybe something recent? That doesn't rely on sound, please.

Edited by Janne Halla
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1st: Prof. Amy Lupin - 24493 points (Gold Joystick)

2nd: Janne Halla - 10080 points (Silver Joystick)

3rd: Adeline Morior- 6727 points (Bronze Joystick)

Janne was the only person to vote this month and he suggested "something recent" that didn't rely on sound.  So this means for December we will be playing a game from 2000 or later which can be played perfectly well with your device's sound off... and I will likely be looking for something themed around winter/late fall!

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